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Creamy Basil Ice Cream | Italian Gelato Recipe

This creamy Basil Ice Cream takes me straight back to Italy! There's something magical about the combination of cream, basil and this hint of lemon! You will love this unusual ice cream flavor!

Course Dessert, icecream
Cuisine europe, france, italy
Keyword basil, creamy, dessert, easy, gelato, icecream, Italian, lemon
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 portions
Calories 300 kcal
Author Kiki Johnson


  • 150 g sugar
  • 1 lemon
  • 25 to 30 g basil leaves
  • 500 ml cream
  • 250 ml full fat milk
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 5 large egg yolks


  1. Measure out the sugar. Zest lemon directly into the sugar and rub everything together for about a minute or so, until the sugar gets fragrant. 

  2. Use a food processor to grind the basil leaves with the lemon sugar and one cup of the heavy cream, until the leaves are ground as fine as possible. Be careful not to whip the cream already. Feel free to pre-grind the basil with a bit of the milk from the recipe before adding the cream. Pour half of the mixture through a strainer into a large bowl. Add the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream.

  3. Heat the other half of the basil lemon puree in a saucepan along with the whole milk and salt over medium heat. In another bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. When the basil mixture is steaming, slowly pour into the egg yolks while whisking constantly. Return the mixture back into the saucepan.

  4. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about five minutes. Pour the custard through the strainer into the bowl with the cream mixture. Cool custard over an ice bath while stirring.

  5. Chill completely, then freeze in an ice cream machine according to the manufacturer's instructions. Let harden in the freezer for a few hours before serving.